I have always loved animals. Horses, cats, dogs, hamsters, you name it and I love it. In light of that and in order to keep our home from becoming a complete zoo, my hubby and I restricted the species to Dobermans; our own, as well as a host of Dobermans we fostered for a North Carolina rescue we joined in 2005. Even after moving to New Hampshire, we have continued to foster one Dobie at a time for a local rescue. Over the years I’ve lost count of the number of dogs we’ve fostered, and the number of dogs we’ve had to let go to what rescuers call the Bridge.
Recently, we had to let our matriarch Dobie go, a dog we started fostering when she was 7 weeks old and adopted not long after that. It’s been a rough time, the pain and loss reflected not just in our human hearts, but also in the three puppy boys left behind.
Why bring this up in a blog post you ask? I write about our loss, not to depress you, but to illustrate how important this kind of pain is to our writing. My writing has been effected by her loss as I’m in the midst of pushing to meet the deadline for my next book. It sucks to not be able to curl into a ball and hide from the world, but I’ve realized that channeling my loss into my writing has been cathartic, and has helped me find the emotion that I sometimes struggle to express on the page.
Our characters can’t be like just us, and we don’t want them to be. As writers, we have to explore a range of emotions even those that make us uncomfortable or we struggle to understand. Only then can we more fully discover who our characters are and make them real to the readers so that they may see themselves in our stories. Touching the lives of our readers so that they feel seen, and heard, and understood should be the goal of every writer. By finding that level of connection we can better appreciate, not just the differences in the ways we experience the world, but when it comes to love and loss, how very much we are alike.
May Your Words Flow Freely,
The Zodiac Assassins series
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Gemini Asunder Book 3 coming Fall 2019